Kathy Morris & Robin Smith

A real estate/sister-in-law duo since 2015, Kathy Morris and Robin Smith have quite different professional backgrounds. Kathy graduated with a degree in communication disorders from UMass Amherst. She then moved back to her hometown of Redondo Beach and bought her first property at the age of 23. Five years later she turned her love of real estate into a career. Robin’s background was in health care. From a small town in Northern California, she moved south to attend USC. She got her real estate license in 2015, and the two have been business partners ever since.

What have been your proudest moments during the recent crisis? 

“At the beginning of the pandemic, there was so much uncertainty and many deals were falling apart. By listening to all of the concerns and fears and keeping the channels of communication between everyone involved open and calm, we were able to keep our clients and all parties working together. We are proud to have closed six transactions since the start of COVID-19, and we have several more we are currently working on.”

Tell us about the heroes on your team. 

“Our husbands and kids are the heroes of our team, hands-down. Not only do they motivate us to be at the top of our game in all aspects of our work and our personal lives, but they understand the sacrifice of time that is necessary when running a successful business. We couldn’t do it without their support.”

Tell us about a recent success story in your business.

“In the height of the pandemic, our clients were given notice to move out of the home they had been renting. They were heartbroken and didn’t want to leave the neighborhood or move their daughters out of the school district. There were no rentals available, and they didn’t think they could buy. We worked tirelessly to get them qualified and ended up beating multiple offers to buy an amazing house on the same street!”

How would your clients describe what you do? 

“They would tell you we genuinely care about them and their interests. One of our clients recently wrote: ‘Kathy and Robin are THE BEST! We presented them with a unique set of challenges that might discourage other agents. I think the best way to put this is: They are on the ball. And very organized, friendly, super easy to work with, professional, well-connected.’”

How did you come up with your motto “Hustle and Heart”? 

“We were placing an ad in the Redondo Union High School football program and were looking up football quotes to try to be clever. We came across ‘hustle and heart,’ and instantly it resonated with us. We work tirelessly for our buyers and sellers because we are passionate about real estate and about them. The home sales and purchases we handle are deeply personal and important to the people we work with on all sides of the deal.”

What challenges are specific to your industry?

“Being someone’s trusted real estate consultant is an around-the-clock job. There are so many time-sensitive issues and huge emotional roller coasters to navigate during a home purchase or sale. We are always striving to take exceptional care of our clients. In every transaction, there is something new to learn. We have to think on our toes and problem-solve all the time. It’s helpful that we have each other as sounding boards. We believe that as long as we are acting with integrity, we can’t go wrong.”

What are you especially grateful for today?

“We are so grateful to have each other! It’s not every day that you find a business partner (not to mention family member) you can work with day in and day out and not drive each other crazy! We trust each other completely, and our personalities and different strengths complement each other perfectly.”

Has motherhood made you both better entrepreneurs?

“Having kids has taught us both how to multi-task very well. We are motivated by the fact that we want to be strong role models for our children and teach them the value of hard work and perseverance.”

What vacation destination are you dreaming of these days?

Kathy: “Costa Rica is our magical place where we unplug and rejuvenate away from the energy of our busy lives. We have visited every year for the past six years and are very much missing our usual summer getaway this year.”

Robin: “Kauai—with warm, sandy beaches on one side and the tropical jungle on the other. We love a good balance of adventure and relaxation. I have an active husband and two busy boys; having something for all of us to do is important for a dreamy vacation.”